Launch Overviews - Near space ballooning - an overview
So you want to strap a camera to a balloon and take some pictures of the thin blue line of the atmosphere and the blackness of space? Here is how to do just that and recover your camera!
The first thing to discuss is how it all works in general.
A helium balloon takes your payload (insulating box) which contains cameras (generally recording continuous video, but sometimes taking stills) and GPS locator upwards. Air pressure drops as it gets higher causing the balloon to expand which ultimately results in the balloon bursting. A parachute then opens up to bring it down gently. The GPS locator is then contacted to tell you where it is once the payload has landed. You can then simply drive to the landing site and recover the craft.
We have some tutorials here at Sentintospace.com that show you the intricacies of near space ballooning, with tips and tricks from our years of experience.
How to know where the payload will land Flight predicting
How much gas to put in the balloon Burst calculator
How to string up a parachute for automatic opening Parachute
How to build a payload from space foam Payload construction
How to use our GPS locators Tracking
How to gather data from your flight Black box
How to fill the balloon Balloon filling